What do you like about NARS? What don't you like?

Tell us what you love and hate about...


I like how their seasonal collections are more edited and focused, though I think they repeat themselves a lot. It’s a brand I’d expect to experiment more, especially with seasonal launches.

— Christine

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I really like NARS’ blush formula, so I always enjoy their blush palettes. They tend to do a nice variety of depths and also finishes within the blush palettes as well, which I appreciate. That being said, I feel like their limited edition collections used to feel a lot more inspiring and artistic than they have lately. I also think there are hits and misses within their permanent line; for instance, I really like their powder bronzer, powder blush, eyeshadow primer and lipsticks, but I haven’t had very good luck with their foundations and the eyeshadows have been inconsistent to the point that I now avoid them.

I forgot to mention that, but I agree with you on blush formula and colors. They are my staples and I buy few, almost none from other brands.

I love that it feels like a luxury brand, but don’t like that it’s priced like a luxury brand, especially in terms of quality, which I feel doesn’t measure up a lot of the time. Also, the hyper-sexualized naming of some of their products is not my favorite.

I hated everything I got from them aside from their tinted moisturizer and I appreciate being able to find base products for my olive-yellow skin.

Torrid blush hard panned every time I used it and I had to always scrape it. The lid of amour broke off literally a week after I got it.

The matte skin tint is cakey and oxidized bad on me. The matte concealer also looked cakey and emphasized all dry flakes on my face.

I decided to retry NARS recently during their sale and was even more disappointed. The Afterglow lipbalm in turbo led to a coworker asking if I’ve been biting my lips because it sunk into my lip lines.

Afghan red fell out of the tube when it arrived. Shanghai red had a smushed tip. Transiberian fell out of the tube after 1 day of carrying it in my bag. Also the new packaging feels really cheap for the lipsticks. They’re so small and their lack of weight makes it feel even worse. I was excited to get the lipsticks in transiberian and shanghai express with the special red Packaging but again, they just felt like plastic pieces from a board game.

I brought this up with customer service which was really helpful but was extremely disappointed considering how expensive the brand is and how much of a following they have.

I spoke to others about it and a lot of people feel the same way about NARS and one person said how NARS used to be really high quality but has gone downhill from then.

Nars is very creative and innovative with the shades of blush, eyeshadow and lip products that they create! And I love that aspect very much. I’m also very satisfied with their online ordering, too.
Thus far, I have been mostly very satisfied and happy with every Nars product I’ve ever bought. From my pair of e/s duos, a couple of Dual Intensity e/s’s in Pasiphae and Callisto, several blushes, blush palette, Audacious lipsticks, etc.

One thing that has bothered me about the brand itself has been several of their LE collections with highly misogynistic, sexual and/or violent imagery on the packaging. This is supposed to be “art”, I suppose. It doesn’t exactly make me feel make-up-y or glamorous looking at those images, though.
Personally speaking, I’ve had one fail. Only one. But it was epic. The Ulta exclusive bright set of VLG’s literally TORE up my lips! Made them develop chapped pits by days end. Hated those!

I love the NARS Audacious Lipstick formula bc my lips feel absolutely comfortable with this lipstick on–no reactions, no dryness, no tingling. It’s the only lipstick still available for sale that I’ve tried that I feel comfortable wearing. Most other formulas that I found comfortable for my lips are discontinued and I’m not in a hurry to try experiment with other brands (and have to deal with reactions)

I dislike how there hasn’t been more Audacious Lipstick colors released recently. I would like more dusty or nude corals added to the line-up.

Nars has always been a sentimental favorite. He started 2 years before UD and really WAS edgy with color then. Shadows were all ‘worse’ BITD, and I can’t say he evolved. Look at the formulas NOW, even in budget brands. I have been terribly loyal to blush and lip: original, Audacious, VLG. I have enjoyed most of the ‘shock value’ products, even if not participating. The base products never suited me at all, including the iconic RCC. Skincare: why did he bother? Since the vast improvement with DS level products, his seem pretty overpriced by comparison.

I completely agree with your last statement. Had I started out with makeup in today’s drugstore and online indie offerings, there is NO WAY that I would give NARS a second look.

I forgot. I dislike Orgasm, his dead horse, that he has ridden to the graveyard and back. But then, I dislike making fetishes and expanding what I consider one trick ponies, anyway. Same with CT and Pillow Talk.

I’ve had a love affair with Nars for years. I love so many of their (now no longer available at Sephora) eyeshadow duos (Kalahari, Kauai, Habanera – I could go on and on) and singles (Stud, Lhasa….) and the dual intensity shadows (I know a lot of people didn’t like them but I loved them) and I like their blushes as well. I’ve never tried their base/foundation products but of the products of theirs that I do have, I’ve been happy. I have a gift/mini of one of their mascaras that is DREADFUL – possibly the WORST mascara EVER, and the same goes for some of their pencil liners but Mulholland Drive (is it LE?) is a great one.

Oh – I forgot to add that my experience with the Suede version of the Voyageur palette has just fanned the flames of my Nars love affair – I am so pleased with that little gem!

When Mecca opens again, I am going to take a long look at that Suede Voyageur palette because it is my kind of shades too. I have the Huda Smokey Obessions (which you would love as well) and wonder if it is too similar. But I don’t think so.

Interesting that you should mention Smokey Obsessions because maybe a year ago, Sephora sent me (I was blown away) a “thank you” package and one of the Huda palettes was included – the Gemstone one. I was grateful but it wasn’t exactly to my taste – lots of really glittery glitter and shades that aren’t ones I wear. But I went to see what else was available in that line and immediately the Smokey Obsessions one caught my eye and my first thought was “Why couldn’t they have sent THAT one?” I very nearly bought it and then convinced myself I didn’t need it and by the time I changed my mind again, it was no longer available “in store” and I figured that was a message from the Makeup gods that I really didn’t need it (in the same way that finding Suede so discounted was a message that I DID need it). If you do end up getting it, I hope you like it!

Liked the blushes I’ve tried (but only bought Orgasm). Over a decade ago, bought and quite liked a couple of thick pencil eyecolors/liners with subtle glitter and creme-powder texture. Very fond of my one (old) velvet matte lip crayon in Dolce Vita. Surprisingly perfect red for me, subtle, striking and suits my coloring. Enjoy the sleek, matte black packaging.
Underwhelmed by most of the eye products I’ve sampled. Never moved to try any other face products from them.

I love how their colors are extremely well-designed. There is rarely an unflattering color for lip or cheek. I would buy more NARS if they introduced more satin lip crayons, and more blushes. I hate how the quality on pressed products (cheek palettes/ eyeshadows) are inconsistent. If the quality were always great, I’d buy a ton more. Colors are fantastic. Foundation coloring system is an Uber smelly dumpster fire.

I recently bought a quad of eyeshadows Orgasm from NARS and am not really impressed, actually am going to return it to Sephora, the shadows aren’t that special and there is no distinction between the colors so it’s a No for me.
I do like their foundation sheer glow ?

Before reading all the other replies, off the top of my head:
I love their blushes.
I love their foundations.
I love how quickly they deliver orders.
I don’t love their sexual names for everything but it also doesn’t bother me terribly.
I really wanted that last blush palette they had until I saw how sheer and patchy it was. That made me sad.
I wish we could choose the samples we get a bit more than we can.

Like: I think their blushes are consistently good and their Audacious lipstick line was a winner. And sometimes they hit the mark with their eyeshadows.

Dislike: Their smutty, oversexualised names for their products are off putting to me. The brand’s eyeshadow palettes and quads can be hit and miss too, especially for the price.

The thing I love most is the naming of the products! Always makes me smile. But other than that, the eyeshadows I’ve tried have been great quality and Orgasm is such a pretty blush… If I could justify it, I’d buy more of that line because the shade is perfect for my skin tone. Their packaging is always perfect, too.

I sure don’t like the prices!

Style and design I like, lack of innovative color schemes and consistency in eyeshadow quality I don’t like.

Like: I like their blushes and bronzers. I also like their lip balms. I still want to try out their lipsticks as well.

Dislike: Sheer Glow foundation, that just turned into a bunch of polka dots on my face and made my oily face look dry. I also dislike most of their eye shadow. I keep trying them, but I don’t care too much for the shimmer formula and the mattes are a little dry. I liked the Skin Deep palette the best out of all the ones I’ve tried.

Neutral: the sex names. It’s just old at this point. I don’t really feel embarrassed about it, but I feel it is a worn tired trope at this point.

I’ve noticed a lot of other brands have been changing the name, like CT with Walk of Shame to Walk of No Shame.

Thing is the Orgasm blush has a history behind the name and iconic the world over, so I doubt that will change, but yeah, several companies still use sex as a selling point.

Don’t like: No one mentioned the matte black packaging that attracts fingerprints and leftover makeup so I’m going to mention that!

Like: Sheer glow foundation, the old eyeshadow duos (are they gone now?) and the blushes. The concealer is pretty good too.

The packaging – I have a few eye shadow duos and singles from them and the compacts are literally melting. They feel sticky and you can literally scrape layers off with your nail. I’ve tried cleaning them, but nothing helps. This hasn’t happened before with any cosmetic regardless of price or brand and I can’t bring myself to use them. They feel disgusting to hold.

I love Mars.
But I wish there was more variety in colour options in foundations and concealers.
Many times, one shade is too dark or too light in foundations and you wish there was more shades options between this colour and this colour.
Colours are often, too yellow or orange or too cool etc.
Imagine if every colour of the iconic concealer, had 2 more options in lighter and darker shades in both cool and varmer tones.
But more different shades between MADELEINE and CHANTILLY, is also a must.
Imagine if there was 94 colours in concealers!

I love their lip colors, especially in the lip crayon line, the eye duos, blushes, but I dislike their plastic packaging! They become sticky and gross, not at all hygienic! I hope, due to the new regulations about covid-19, they will consider to change this. I even polished them with a water-based waterproof glaze, but no one should resort to such means in order to make something useful.

Phenomenal customer service. Long story short, I purchased one of their foundations from SpaceNK and it didn’t work for me so I went in to at least exchange it for another type. SpaceNK refused, however NARS has a policy of accepting returns/refunds if the formula didn’t work for you (within reason). NARS actually called the exact SpaceNK store and spoke with the manager over the phone and told them to take the return and find me a product from their line that would work for me. NARS then followed up with me, via email, and asked if the customer service from the store was good and if I found another NARS product I liked, I did, and let them know.

Love – they often have well-thought out collections…even if redundant

Hate – the clasps/closures on their palettes break within a few weeks of use. They’re the only palettes I own that don’t close anymore and rubber bands should not be necessary on such expensive items.

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